Tuesday, May 17, 2011


Yo -

This is Jordi. She or he has been living inside of me for 13 weeks now. That is sooooo Jordi.

Jordi is the Catalan version of George. As St. George is the patron saint of Catalunya, everyone here is named Jordi. Thus, this is the in-utero name we have applied to our child in order to avoid calling him or her 'it' and also because we like poking fun at Catalunya.

Colònies 2011

So colònies is like camp in Catalunya. Kids as young as 4 go on overnight camp trips (staying in buildings, not tents!) with their classes. Lily will be going on her first one next week, to a seaside camp.

There are a vast number of companies that have rural or coastal houses or complexes where schools can take these trips. Sometimes they include 'monitors' or camp counselors that can lead the kids on different activities, sometimes the school staff do this. They also usually have a cafeteria with staff who provide the food.

Some of these places also let families pay to come for weekends or weeks and hang out/meet other families. Think Kellerman's in Dirty Dancing.

Some of the parents in Lily's class thought it would be fun for a bunch of us to go do this....and we did.

We went to Pou de Glaç (Ice well), one of may complexes run by a company called Rosa dels Vents.

The kids went off with a monitor in the mornings and afternoons to do things like bake pastries, go on a zip line and do an obstacle course in the woods. Parents did a higher zip line, wall climbing and archery. It was all very laid back, so if a kid wanted to stay with his or her parents, or if you preferred to go on a walk instead of doing the activities....it was just fine.

We ended day one with a post-dinner birthday party for some of the kids from Lily's class, and a dance party hosted by the camp monitors. Lily had some MOVES out there on the dance floor with her little friends. I was having fun dancing, too, but at 10:40 she stopped dead and said quietly, 'Mom, I just can't dance anymore. Can I go to bed?'

Sunday, February 27, 2011

A weekend with Sika (Cap de setmana amb la Sika)

This weekend we had the class mascot Sika spend the weekend with us. Each kid in Lili's class gets a weekend and draws a picture and writes a sentence about what Sika liked doing with them. You can also add a sheet with some photos and descriptions, and then on Monday the kid gets to talk about what they did with Sika. Is nice.

Here is Sika:

Here is Lili's picture about what Sika liked:
'I liked playing with Lili's cars.'

And here is the longer version of what we did. Click for full size.


On Saturday my dad, Sika and I went to Sitges. We had a lot of fun on the train. We wanted to build a sandcastle but it was too cold, so we ate roast chicken and french fries instead. I was really tired and fell asleep on a bench, so Dad and Sika played alone.

That night I made Sika a little table and she ate her dinner under our table. I also made her a bed with my dolls' pillow and blanket. Before bedtime we read a Charlie and Lola story.

On Saturday Dad showed us how to make paper airplanes we we threw them off our balcony.

Later we went to Nora's house to play and have lunch. Nora, Sika and I really like cous cous!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Angela's Saturday afternoon paella recipe

Start with lots of fish broth and non-long-grain rice. (Rice not pictured.)

Heat some olive oil and grated garlic in a pan. Paella pan preferable. After a minute, add rice and fish broth. 1x rice to 2x broth. Med-high heat.

Add some tomato slices.

Add small prawns. (If you learn that rice takes 900 years to cook on your stove, as we have learned on ours, you can add these guys later so they don't get over-cooked.)

Add saffron.

Add frozen peas. Or regular ones.

Have a beer.

Like this.

Go do some laundry.

Keep adding fish broth and rotating the pan until the damn rice is almost ready. Add mussels. These are open because they were leftover from dinner the night before and are just being re-heated by the steam. Not sure how advisable that is.

Add cockles.

Cover and when your shelled items are open, it's ready!

Feed to undeserving but cute people.


Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Lili is 5!

Today our baby is 5. Five years ago today, Oli was at London getting grilled by the US government in the embassy, I was in Oak Lawn, IL at Christ Hospital and Lili was getting born!

To recall all the gory and cute details of her first two weeks, read these blog posts.

Otherwise, today we've had a pancake breakfast and will have her favorite dinner (spaghetti!) with a special dessert of her choosing from the bakery, tomorrow Oli's parents are coming over from England, on Friday her friend Violet will go with Lili to an indoor play place, on Saturday we're staging a pirate treasure hunt birthday party with neighbors (Oli will be the pirate - what a dad!), and next Saturday there will be a co-party at her school with other classmates who are turning 5 around now.